Vegetables in containers (Google / HerZine)

Read at : Google Alert – Container Gardening

http://www.herzine.org/container-gardening-vegetables/

Container Gardening Vegetables

Container gardening vegetablesis very easy and one of the best ways to garden, especially if you don’t have good growing soil or if you don’t have the room for a traditional garden. If you have a deck or a patio, you can grow vegetables in containers. Even if you have a lot of space, once you learn how to plant a vegetable garden in containers, you may never go back again to raking, hoeing and tilling a patch in your yard to grow your vegetables.

There are many benefits to container gardening vegetables and perhaps one of the biggest benefits is that anyone can do it. Another benefit is that it’s very easy to move your plants should you need to do so. For example, if it’s raining too hard and you don’t want your plants to receive too much water at one time, you can move them to a protected area. You can also move them if you feel they are getting too much or too little sun.

It is much easier to keep your vegetable plants well-fed and watered when they are grown in containers. It is also much easier to control the fertilizer your plants get and ensure they receive the proper amount when they are confined to the smaller area of a container. Even though fertilizer can sometimes be washed away quicker in a smaller area, you will be able to make sure your plants are getting the amounts they need by fertilizing on a regular basis.

Container vegetable gardening allows you to extend the growing season of your plants. You can start early by growing your vegetable plants indoors in smaller containers. If you use seeds you can start them in peat pots that are available just about any place that sells seeds or gardening supplies. Make sure you place the pot in a warm area that gets sufficient sunlight. The seeds should be started between 4 and 8 weeks before you plan to transplant them to a larger container.

Once the weather has stabilized, you can move them to larger containers outdoors being careful to avoid injury to the root system. Vegetable plants are typically transplanted once they develop a few true leaves. Toward the end of the growing season, you can protect your plants by wrapping the containers in blankets or other insulating materials to keep the soil warm.

Choosing The Right Garden Containers

You can use just about any type of container for container gardening vegetables. Some examples are gallon cans, wooden boxes, bushel baskets, and even plastic storage bins. The size of your containers will depend on what type of plants you intend to grow. Tomato plants and pepper plants require 5 gallon containers and smaller plants, such as leaf lettuce, green onions and herbs only need 1 gallon containers.

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Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.